Sam Hurd sentenced to 15 years in prison

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Former NFL receiver Sam Hurd has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for his role in a drug trafficking conspiracy.

Hurd, who pleaded guilty in April to conspiring to possess and distribute cocaine, was sentenced in a federal courtroom in Texas today. Under federal sentencing laws, Hurd faced a minimum of 10 years.

Rebecca Lopez of WFAA in Dallas reports that Hurd stood before the judge and begged for a second chance. Hurd claimed that his marijuana addiction led him to make bad decisions. The judge admonished Hurd for throwing away a great opportunity as an NFL player.

The 28-year-old Hurd played for the Cowboys from 2006 to 2010 and for the Bears in 2011. His NFL career came to an abrupt end one day during the 2011 season when he went from Bears practice to a Chicago restaurant for what he thought was a meeting with Mexican drug dealers to arrange to buy tens of thousands of dollars worth of cocaine. Hurd was actually meeting with undercover FBI agents.

Hurd’s attorney said after the sentencing that he was pleased that the judge did not impose the maximum sentence of life in prison without parole.